A BRIGHT FUTURE—Sonya Tilghman, executive director of the Hazelwood Initiative, stands at 5243 Gertrude Street, the future site of a homeownership incubator.(Photos by Diane I. Daniels)

A BRIGHT FUTURE—Sonya Tilghman, executive director of the Hazelwood Initiative, stands at 5243 Gertrude St., the future site of a homeownership incubator.(Photos by Diane I. Daniels)

Pittsburgh, comprised of 90 neighborhoods is recognized for its style, character and uniqueness of each.  Manchester and the Mexican War Streets located on the North Side are known for their historical architecture.

Bloomfield for its Italian cuisine and ancestry and the Hill District the home of August Wilson was once a mecca for the social life for African Americans.

Hazelwood, once a thriving community, in the 19th century housed over 200 businesses and a significant size African American population. It thrived mostly because of several steel and coke-making plants located in and around the community like the former J&L and LTV mills. In the 1980s when the steel industry started to decline like most of the other areas so did Hazelwood. Pittsburgh’s last operating steel mill, the Hazelwood Coke Works, closed in 1998.

Currently undergoing a resurgence Hazelwood, located approximately four miles east of Downtown, along the northern shore of the Monongahela River will soon be labeled as one of Pittsburgh’s up and coming neighborhoods.

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